Best of Uganda Safari (13 Days)

Bwindi Impenetrable Forest – Queen Elizabeth/Ishasha- Murchison Falls – Kidepo Valley – Sipi Falls

Duration:             13 days / 12 nights

Type:                     Private / All inclusive

Highlights:         Gorilla tracking in Bwindi / Queen Elizabeth (including Ishasha sector), Murchison Falls and Kidepo Valley / famous ‘Leopard Drive’ at Queen Elizabeth / tree-climbing lions at Ishasha / tranquility at Lake Mburo / magnificent falls at Murchison / search for leopard and lion at Murchison / lions sunning themselves on the rocks and the chance of cheetah and leopard at Kidepo / unrivalled beauty of Kidepo Valley /cool mountain air and relaxation at Sipi Falls.

Day 1: Jinja/Kampala/Entebbe to Lake Mburo (+/- 5 hours) (Budget option, Lake Nabugabo)

Morning departure through the forests and wetlands of southern Uganda.  We stop at the equator for a photo opportunity before heading on to Lake Mburo national park and your accommodation.  Lake Mburo is a delightful small park with a healthy population of leopard and occassionally lions and hyena.  It also has zebra, impala, topi, reedbuck, eland, hippos, oribi and a wide variety of birds.  In the evening we’ll take a game drive around the compact park in search of these. On the budget safari we branch off to camp for the night on the shores of the tranquil Lake Nabugabo.  It is crocodile, hippo and bilharzia free so you can cool off in it’s waters.

Day 2: Lake Mburo (Nabugabo) to Bwindi Impenetrable Forest (+/- 5 hours)

A relaxing breakfast taking in the beautiful views of the park and lake before we head west and up into the mountains of western Uganda.  The road up to Bwindi is beautiful but slow going and we will arrive at your accommodation in the late evening.

Day 3: Gorilla Tracking

Your guide will already have booked you in so after a briefing from your ranger you head on foot to find your gorilla group. The walk can be anything from 30 mins to 4 hours, but is usually in the 1-2 hour range.  The going can be tough, the terrain steep, vegetation lush and the weather wet but when you finally come across the magnificant beasts it will all be worthwhile!  You will spend one hour with them, observing their day to day activities at close quarters, following them through the forest.  The time will fly but the memories will stay with you forever.

Please note:

If you are sick you will not be able to visit. Gorillas are so closely related to us that they can catch all of our diseases but may not be so well equiped in recovering from them. Their safety is paramount. Unfortunately your permit is non refundable.

A reasonable level of fitness is required for this trek.

Good walking shoes, waterproof jacket and long trousers are essential.

You are welcome to take photographs but you must use a camera where you can turn off the flash. Flash photgraphy can freak out gorillas and you don’t want to be on foot near a freaked out 400lb gorilla.

Day 4: Bwindi to Queen Elizabeth (Ishasha) (+/- 5-7 hours)

After breakfast overlooking the misty forest we will leave Bwindi and head north to Ishasha. We will arrive at our accommodation in the afternoon in time for an evening game drive in the Ishasha sector of the park on the look out for it’s famous tree climbing lions and healthy population of hyena.  Whichever option you take you will enjoy your dinner in the peaceful surroundings of Ishasha.

Day 5: Queen Elizabeth NP

An early start to see what the main area of Queen Elizabeth has to offer which includes lion, leopard, elephant, hippos, uganda kob, buffalo and more. We will take lunch in the park and cruise the Kazinga channel in the afternoon enjoying the wildlife on it’s banks and the hippos and crocodiles within.  We will return to the lodge for dinner.

Day 6: Queen Elizabeth NP to Fort Portal (+/- 4 hours)

A morning drive through park and farmland with the Rwenzori’s forming a spectacular back drop to the pleasant town of Fort Portal in time for lunch.  In the afternoon we will have time to explore on foot, in the car or on a bike one or two of the volcanic crater lakes the area is famed for and take a swim there or in the spectacular swimming pool (luxury). Spend the evening in your lodge, the area is home to some of the best in Africa.

Day 7: Fort Portal to Murchison Falls NP (+/- 8 hours)

A scenic drive through the green rolling hills of central western Uganda arriving at our lodge in the late afternoon, in time for a cooling dip in the pool and sundowners overlooking the Nile and Murchison Falls NP.

Day 8: Murchison Falls NP

An early start and cross the Nile for a morning game drive in search of lion, leopard, elephant, giraffe, kob, buffalo and much more.  After lunch we take the falls launch to visit the spectacular Murchison Falls as they thunder down the Albert escarpment. Along the way it is tranquil and virtually unchanged since the arrival of European explorers as we keep an eye out for game such as elephant, hartebeest, waterbuck on the banks and of course hippos and crocodiles in the water.  In the evening we will head to our accommodation on the northern edge of the park for the night.

Day 9: Murchison Falls NP to Kidepo Valley NP (+/- 7 hours)

An early start before heading into northern Uganda.  As we head north through Acholiland you will notice that the terrain and the people change. We first head to the bustling market town of Gulu, the capital of the north, before moving on to Kitgum through an inspiring landscape of rocky outcrops and villages recovering with dignity from the ravages of the past.  We stop for lunch in the dusty outpost of Kitgum before turning to the east towards Kidepo. Gradually the flat plains give way to a more mountainous terrain before finally we climb through the stunning mountain pass finally emerging to its secret: the beauty of Kidepo Valley National Park.  Once inside the park we will head to our accommodation – comfort camping, (budget and mid-range) or Apoka Lodge (luxury) to freshen up before a short evening game drive.

Day 10: Kidepo Valley NP

Wake up in the middle of the action and watch the sunrise over the Morongole mountains with a coffee and some fresh fruit. Then we begin our day of game viewing with a visit to the Narus valley in search of  lion, elephant, giraffe, eland, zebra, and leopard and to marvel at the sight of the huge herd of buffalo grazing in the wetland. We return to camp for a more substantial breakfast before heading towards the seasonal Kidepo river in search of cheetah and ostrich. We take a packed lunch among the Barassas palms at the Kidepo river, from which the area take their name before returning to camp or your lodge in the mid afternoon. You can find a nice shady spot to relax (by the pool if in the lodge) or take the optional nature walk or community visit before a traditional African poike stew around the campfire in the evening or dinner at your lodge.

Day 11: Kidepo Valley NP to Sipi Falls (+/- 10 hours)

Up in time for sunrise again and a leisurely breakfast before the long journey ahead. One final chance to see some wildlife on our way out of the park and the reverse journey to Kitgum. After a short break in Kitgum we head south to Lira where we will stop for lunch. In the afternoon we head further south through the marshland of eastern Uganda before we climb into the foothills of Mount Elgon and our accommodation nestled on the banks of the Sipi River. Dinner by a roaring fire to ward off the chill of the fresh mountain air.

Day 12: Sipi Falls

A relaxing start with a sumptuous breakfast in the rustic and cosy surroundings of your lodge.  Then your choice of walks around Sipi Falls: long or short, strenuous or laid back.  All walks include visiting farm areas and at least one waterfall and all require some level of fitness.  After lunch at the lodge you will have a couple of hours to relax before taking the coffee tour and witnessing the production of the great coffee this region is renowned for from farm to cup.

Day 13: Sipi Falls to Jinja (+/- 2.5 hours), Kampala (+/- 5 hours), Entebbe (+/- 6 hours).

After a final filling breakfast we leave Sipi Falls and wind our way back down to the plain before heading back to your departure point.

Safari Extension 1, 2 or 3 nights: Jinja Adrenalin.

You can add two nights at Lake Bujagali, 8kms out of Jinja to experience your choice of adrenalin activities including whitewater rafting, horseback safaris, jet boating, mountain biking, quadbikes, bungee, sunset cruises and more.

Safari Price Guide

Safari Package Includes

  • 4×4 vehicles specially adapted for game viewing
  • English speaking guides
  • All accommodation costs on a twin share or dormitory basis
  • All park fees and game drive fees
  • Rhino Trek
  • Murchison Falls Boat Trip
  • Camp attendant/cook
  • Meals as indicated on itinerary (not included for Jinja Adrenalin Extension)

Recommended Daily Spending Allowance

USD $15 – 30 per day

The above is a guideline only.

Optional Extras

  • Village Walk $10,
  • Nature Walk $30,
  • Jinja adrenalin prices on application

Safari Package Excludes

  • Airfare to and from Uganda and/or Domestic Airfare
  • Visa’s
  • Airport transfers (we recommend Pineapple
  • Travel Insurance
  • First and last night’s accommodation in Jinja, Kampala or Entebbe (except Jinja for Safari Extension)
  • All beverages except tea, coffee or juice taken at breakfast where breakfast is included
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Souvenirs and items of a personal nature like telephone calls
  • Any activity, meal or accommodation NOT mentioned in the itinerary
  • Porters and other luggage service

What to bring?

Uganda’s parks and campsites are unfenced. You may need to leave your tent briefly in the night and to do so safely you will need a good torch.

Kidepo is generally hot and sunny during the day so sunscreen and a hat are a good idea, but it does get chilly at night there and at Mount Elgon so a good jacket/jumper is also advisable.

There is no power supply in the wilderness so please charge you cameras and phones to the brim before departure.

Spending money for additional activities.  There are no banks where we’re going!

What to leave behind?

Try to keep you luggage to a minimum. We travel with all our camping equipment so if you can leave big bags somewhere safe it makes it more comfortable for everyone.

Basic Terms

This is the African wilderness, we do our very best to keep to the programme and timings but sometimes the weather/animals/roads get the better of us!

Payment. A deposit of 25% is due at the time of booking, non-refundable from three weeks prior to the Safari. The balance is due one week prior to departure. From within Uganda, please pay in either US$ or UGX into any Equity Bank branch to:

Buffalo Rocks Limited
UGX a/c 1028200730610
US$ a/c 1028200730612